When it comes to your big day you can normally envisage exactly how its going to be. As girls we do this from a very young age. So why on earth is it so hard to pick a venue?.
Do you pick something close by?, Do you go for somewhere that holds a lot of memories for the both of you?, Do you try to please others by picking somewhere that may not fulfil all of your dreams but is easy for the majority of your guests to get to?. You would think being one of the most important parts of the whole day (apart from being surrounded by loved ones, of course!) it would be the easiest part of your planning. Well, think again!.
For us it was a toss up between a lavish City venue in the middle of London towns hustle and bustle or an elegant Manor house with a more traditional feel.
When picking the venue EVERYTHING has to coincide. The Photographs, Seating plan/ table placement, Number of guests attending both the ceremony and reception, whether you want both to take place in one venue, Accessibility and the overall look or theme you are hoping to achieve.
So let's start with the Photographs. As brides to be we have all spent hours, if not days researching the perfect Photographer for us. We all know what image we can picture blown up and hung pride of place in our homes for all to see. But what would your idea of a perfect Wedding photo be and will your venue live up to the task?.
With a city venue you could achieve the most amazing, modern and artistic Photographs. Imagine capturing the Bride and Groom with a backdrop of fast moving cars, pedestrians and the bright lights and infamous signs of London Town or in front of the cities most historical landmarks. If something a little different from the norm is what you are both after then this is definitely an ideal choice.
However if you are after something a little more glamorous and traditional to fill your albums then why would you think of anywhere other than a Manor house?. Beautiful backdrops of rolling countryside, Flower arches, Stunning ornate buildings, Pristine gardens and Nature at its very finest. Both so contrary but equally as breath taking.
This takes us on to the overall look or theme you are trying to achieve. City weddings are usually extremely extravagant and as most City venues are normally new buildings or hotels they are usually a lot more modern and open plan compared to Manor houses. Think pure white rooms, bright lights to match the colour theme of your wedding, modern furniture cleanly lining the room, Outstanding centrepieces formed from the most exotic flowers you could imagine oozing a fresh and vibrant summer feel. If you love to make a statement and are after a wow factor then You are bound to make an impact on your guests with a city wedding.
Manor houses can be equally as breath taking but usually in a more elegant and subtle way. When I picture country weddings I envisage Grand staircases, Walls dripping with historical paintings and antiques, luxurious deep rich colours covering the floors and furniture, Heavy velvet curtains draping around wonderfully oversized windows and French doors. So plush and welcoming with an instantly warming feel.
Now, it is almost impossible to please all of your guests. There will always be a handful of people having to travel further than others so Parking and hotels or B&B's close by are essential. However this is probably a little more important if you choose a City wedding as the venues are normally slap bang in the middle of everything making it near impossible to park without paying a hefty fine or car park charge. Most venues cater for a few driving guests but be sure to double check exactly how many and have a research on local Car parks that will work out cheaper for everyone. If you are also planning on arriving in style make sure your chosen transport can pull up close enough to the entrance as you do not want to be walking around for miles getting flustered, wet, sweaty or blown about before having to walk down the aisle.
The biggest dilemma is deciding whether to have both the ceremony and reception in one venue or separate places. Most venues will cater for either option but you will come across a few that are either only available for one or the other which opens a whole new tin of worms!
From our experience Manor houses seemed to be a lot more organized when it came down to the ceremony and reception being held in one venue. City weddings did cater for this too but most City venues will only have limited space/ rooms available so it may be a case of waiting to have the room where the ceremony was held turned into the dining/ reception area. Again this is all personal preference but can definitely be a game changer for some. Lets just say some venues take a lot more planning in advance to make things perfect on the day.
So, What do you do and where do you go for?! After visiting a few venues this decision became easy for us. We fell head over heels for our chosen location and nothing seemed like hard work as we knew it would all fall into place and be perfect.
'well?...What did you go for, City Venue or Manor house?' I hear you ask. That would just be telling wouldn’t it , and as we only have two months to go before I say 'I do' you haven't got long until all will be revealed my lovely's : )
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